Protein is an important macronutrient found in all the body's cells. Soy protein powder is a supplement used by people looking to increase their protein intake. This is the preferred protein powder by vegans and people who have allergies to dairy. Soy protein powder also contributes to the body when it comes to weight.
The human body needs a certain amount of calories to function during the day. This amount varies, depending on your gender, size and activity levels. An average intake is 2,000 calories. If you eat this amount, your weight will stay right where it is. Adding soy protein to your diet will not cause you to gain weight as long as you still eat 2,000 calories total.
Losing weight takes a caloric restriction. By reducing your daily intake by 500 calories, you can lose about 1 lb. a week, according to MayoClinic.com. For example, if you currently consume 2,300 calories, then your new intake will be 1,800. Soy protein powder in this case, can actually help you lose weight. Protein is filling, and it keeps you feeling full after you consume it. By having a soy protein shake for breakfast or in place of another high-calorie meal, you can keep your appetite under control and stay within your caloric limits. As long as you do not exceed 1,800 calories, you will be fine.
When you consume more calories than your body needs, you will gain weight. This is a goal of people who are thin and looking to bulk up. The University of Illinois McKinley Health Center recommends adding 250 to 500 calories to your daily diet to gain weight gradually. This would, in turn, lead to 1/2 to 1 lb. of weight gain every week. An easy way to get these calories is by having soy protein shakes in between your meals. In this case, soy protein powder can be used to gain weight.
The total calories in soy protein shakes can be altered by using various ingredients. If you are using protein powder and trying to prevent weight gain, for example, water is a good option to use for your liquid. The only calories from this shake will be from the soy protein you add. By using milk, soy milk or juice, you will quickly increase the calories. This is better to do when you are trying to bulk up. You also have the option of making smoothies in a blender and adding other ingredients like frozen yogurt, fresh or frozen fruit and nut butters. Any one of these combinations will actually work for weight gain or weight loss as long as you meet your desired caloric goal for the day.
Soy protein is a dietary supplement. Since it is not regulated by the FDA for safety or efficacy, make sure to use it as directed. Also be aware of any side effects you might experience, such as gas, bloating or intestinal discomfort. Make an appointment with your doctor if any symptoms should occur, or be on the safe side and talk to him before you use soy protein powder.